How Special Educator Experience The Power of Digital Tools

User Profile Image

By Education Today

Posted on April 5, 2022


4 min read

Whatsapp Facebook LinkedIn
Digital Tools for students with Learning Disabilities
  • Rupali Lamkhade, Teaching Faculty- Junior School, The Aditya Birla Integrated School

A special educator is someone who works with students who have a variety of disabilities. They give each individual student the tools and guidance needed to help them succeed. These specially-trained educators are responsible for creating and applying an appropriate curriculum and assigning activities that are specific to each student’s abilities and needs. Special educators not only involve themselves in each student’s academic performance but also in social and behavioral development of the students.

Here’s a quick definition of a learning disability:

  • It is a disorder that inhibits the ability of the person to process data
  • It affects reading, writing, comprehension and math
  • Lastly, children with learning disabilities may find it hard to retain information.

Power of Digital Tools for students with Learning Disabilities

Digital learning emphasizes on learning methods that are collaborative, constructive and enable students to focus on a real world approach to learning. These digital devices are very useful for visual learning, reading, drawing, and watching videos. Technology has always been designed to make the user’s tasks easier to complete; whether it’s an assignment for a student or a time-bound project for an employee. The need for technology assistance in education is even greater.

“For people without disabilities, technology makes things easier.

For people with disabilities, technology make things possible.”

Some examples of Special Digital Tools for Special Needs:

  • Alternative Keyboard:

These programmable alternative keyboards have special overlays that customize the appearance and function of a standard keyboard which is generally used. Students who have Learning Disabilities or have trouble in typing may benefit from it.

  • Audio books

Recorded books allows students to listen to the text and are available in variety of formats, such as CDs and MP3s downloads. Special playback units allows students search and bookmark pages and chapters.

  • Speech synthesizers/ Screen readers

These systems can display and read aloud text on a computer screen, including text that has been typed by the students, scanned pages (e.g. books, letters), or text appearing on web pages.

  • Electronic math worksheet

Electronic mathematics worksheets use software programs that help students organize, align and work through math problems on a computer screen. Numbers that appear onscreen can also be read out loudly via a speech synthesizer.

  • Graphic Organizer

Graphic organizers are the programs that help students who have trouble organizing and outlining information as they begin a writing project. This type of program helps students organize the information into appropriate categories and order.

E.g.: Kidspiration Program

  • Speech recognition software programs

A speech recognition program works in combination with a word processor. The student dictates into a microphone, and the spoken words appear on the computer screen as text. This can help a student whose oral language ability is better than writing skills.

  • Talking calculators

A talking calculator has a built-in speech synthesizer that reads out aloud each number, symbol, or operator a student types; it also reads out the answer to the problem. This auditory feedback may help a student to check the accuracy of the answer before it can be transferred to a paper.

  • Electronic dictionaries/ Talking spell-checkers

Electronic dictionaries/ Talking spell checkers can help a student who finds spellings challenging to identify appropriate words. These devices reads out loud and displays the selected words onscreen, so the students can see and hear the words.

  • Voice recorders

A voice recorder can be used to record lessons. The learners can then play it back for reference and understanding at their own pace.

  • Videos

There are a number of videos freely available on internet that can help our learners up skill with updated information and strategies for smart and quality learning.

Digital technology allows students with learning disabilities to succeed in areas they may not have been able to before. The digital tools available today are making it easier rather I would say making it possible for the kids with learning disabilities to adapt to and to adjust to the demands of social and school related tasks. In recent years, Digital technologies have made remarkable progress in helping children with learning disabilities overcome their specific areas of weakness. Whether it’s a phone that reads text message aloud for dyslexics or an iPhone application that uses graphics to help transition from one activity to other. These devices are helping students with Learning Disabilities succeed.

“Technology is not just a tool, it can give learners a voice that they may not have had before.”

-George Couros